To save content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about saving content to .
To save content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about saving to your Kindle.
Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
To ascertain the efficacy of custody health screening for mental
disorders. We assessed a sample of detainees for the presence of mental
disorders and the need for an appropriate adult. The assessments were
carried out using pragmatic interviews and examinations supported by
structured tools. Where possible, we attributed a probable clinical
diagnosis based on the information available to us. The need for an
appropriate adult was judged based on this information and capacity
Existing screening procedures missed a quarter of cases of severe mental
illness and moderate depression; they also failed to detect about a half
of those at risk of alcohol withdrawal and 70% of those at risk of
withdrawal from crack cocaine. The need for an appropriate adult was not
recognised in more than half of cases.
Consideration should be given to modifying police screening procedures
for mental and associated disorders so that detainees receive the
The polygraph is closely associated with lie detection. A polygraph examination starts with a lengthy pre-test interview in which the questions to be asked during the test itself are determined, and the 'psychological set' is established. The individual is then asked a small number of questions to which 'yes' or 'no' responses are required while attached to the polygraph instrument, and data are recorded. This is followed by a post-test interview during which any significant responses are discussed. This may then develop into formal interrogation. Polygraph proponents argue that the polygraph has substantial utility because of its ability to elicit disclosures from examinees, and acts as a deterrent to those who might engage in problematic behaviour. They also argue that when used by well-trained examiners and interpreted in conjunction with other techniques of information gathering, it can both assist in detecting deception and facilitate the disclosure of relevant information.
Polygraphy is used increasingly in the treatment and supervision of sex offenders, but little research has addressed its accuracy in this setting, or linked accuracy with utility.
To investigate the utility and accuracy of polygraphy in post-conviction testing of community-based sex offenders.
A self-report measure examined the experiences of offenders with polygraphy.
Based on self-report, the polygraph's accuracy was approximately 85%. False negatives and false positives were not associated with demographic characteristics, personality variables or IQ. The majority of offenders found the polygraph to be helpful in both treatment and supervision. Nine per cent of offenders claimed to have made false disclosures; these individuals had higher scores on ratings of neuroticism and lower scores on ratings of conscientiousness.
These results support the view that the polygraph is both accurate and useful in the treatment and supervision of sex offenders.
Training in general and forensic psychiatry in the assessment and treatment of sex offenders is in need of considerable improvement. Although most sex offenders are not mentally ill, many are subject to substance misuse, abnormal personality traits, personality disorder, learning disability or dysphoric mood, and in some organic factors will be involved. Comprehensive assessment of sex offenders includes a full history and mental state evaluation, obtaining a collateral history from other sources, observation, psychometric testing, and psychophysiological methods of assessment, including penile plethysmography. Trials of the use of the polygraph are also under way. The treatment of sex offenders, especially those with paraphilias, may include medication with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors or anti-libidinal agents. Ethical considerations can be problematic, but a balance can often be found between the welfare of the offender and the safety of the public.
This study was designed to clarify the nature and extent of psychiatric provision that would be needed if a new health screening protocol were to be introduced into the prison system. The reception screening questionnaires for every inmate coming into the prison over a 15-week period were reviewed using the new protocol. A further mental health assessment was undertaken on those who had screened positive.
201 men (32.6%) were found to be positive for serious mental illness
Based on this analysis, large increases in psychiatric resources would not be needed if the proposed new reception health screening processes were in place, although a reorganisation of the way in which services are delivered may be required.
With the exception of a very few prolific offenders, sex offending is not a high rate activity. Even recidivist offenders will commit only a small number of offences in their careers, and these may be separated by intervals of years. Because of this, anyone setting out to predict reoffending by sex offenders will do best if they simply assume that none will reoffend, in which case they will be right more often than not. But such an approach, of course, would be criticised for being oversimplistic. Sex offenders have a history, and there is a common belief that if we know enough about an individual's past we should be able to predict his future with great accuracy. This has led some workers to claim that if the right variables can be discovered and plugged into a risk assessment algorithm, then the resulting desktop prediction of risk will outperform any competing clinical method.
Little is known about men who kill in a sexual context. The present study compares a group of sexual murderers with a group of men who had raped but not killed.
Twenty-one men who murdered women in the course of a sexual attack and 121 men convicted of rape were interviewed in six prisons. Victim statements were obtained in 103 cases (73%). Assessment consisted of a 90-minute semi-structured interview, the Eysenck 1–7 questionnaire, and the Schonell reading test.
The most notable characteristic distinguishing the men who killed was their lifelong isolation and lack of heterosexual relationships.
A better understanding of the social and emotional isolation commonly found in sexual murderers may provide important insights into why some sexual offenders go on to kill.
The aim of the study was to identify the phenomenological characteristics of those delusions which are associated with action. The sample consisted of 79 patients admitted to a general psychiatric ward, each of whom described at least one delusional belief. The variables studied included the phenomenology of the delusions, and behaviour. Two behavioural ratings were used, one derived from the subjects' own description of their behaviour and the other from information provided by informants. There was no association between delusional phenomenology and acting on a delusion when the subjects' behaviour was described by informants. When action was described by the subjects themselves, acting was associated with: being aware of evidence which supported the belief and with having actively sought out such evidence; a tendency to reduce the conviction with which a belief was held when that belief was challenged; and with feeling sad, frightened or anxious as a consequence of the delusion.